August 31, 2010

Friendly Tuesday :: Etsy Madness


My husband and I are guilty of a serious Diet Coke addiction.  We end up with a lot of these 44 oz. plastic cups from the convenience store.  They come in handy as scoops and for carrying things around, but too many still end up in the trash can.  When Kim at Seven Thirty Three asked me to write a tutorial, I decided I needed to find a new use for these cups.

I remembered seeing a tutorial once where someone cut up plastic water bottles, colored them with markers, and then melted them to make beads.  Since most of the cups we get are already pretty colorful, I thought the soda cups would be even better.

First, I cut down the cup to just the design area.

Next, I cut the plastic into one inch strips.  I just eyeballed it since I wasn't going for the beads to be exactly the same.

The next step was to roll each strip of plastic and stick it in the tines of a fork.  You could use needle nose pliers to hold it, but I couldn't find mine.  My sons have this telescoping handled fork that worked perfectly for this and the tines kept it from unrolling.

With the electric stove burner on high, I held the rolled plastic over the burner, letting the plastic melt.  You will have to watch carefully so the plastic doesn't burn, but heats enough to melt the layers and hold them together.  The original tutorial I saw used a heat gun. Please be careful with this step.  Stoves are hot and I'm relying on everyone to use common sense.

Carefully remove the bead from the fork (or pliers) and let cool.  The color on the cups intensified when melted, so I'm happy with how they turned out.

The next step was to string the beads together.  I had cut apart the clear part on the bottom half of the cup into small circles and punched holes in them.  I set them on a cookie sheet in a warm oven to get them to curl up a bit.  Those circles made nice spacers between the rolled up beads.

I did this fairly quickly using one cup.  If I had taken my time and used more cups, I could have had a less chunky look, but I like how they turned out.  I'm going to continue to play with this idea and start using up my Diet Coke cups.  It's a prettier way of taking care of the environment!

August 30, 2010

Mini Purse and a Twallet

(Ready to run some errands!)

My youngest, Olivia, LOVES getting into my purse. If it is anywhere within reach she WILL find it and will empty its entire contents onto the floor.

I decided it was time for her to have her own little purse that she could tear apart.  So I made this sweet little purse:

 Nothing special - regular cotton fabric for the outside, flannel for a soft, cozy inside and some straps.
But what does a little princess carry inside her purse?

 Her cell (OF COURSE), a comb and a Twallet.  Wait, what?  What's a TWALLET? A Toddler Wallet of course!  I took inspiration from my felt fairy wallet and made a simple, fold in half wallet with one large pocket for "bills" and two small pockets for her cards (what baby doesn't leave home without a hotel key and Toy's R Us Rewards card?). 
I then put together a few fabric bills using cotton fabric.  I appliqued ones onto the front of the bills, added cellophane sandwiched in between the two layers.  Sewed them together, leaving a 3" gap along the bottom.  Turn them right side out, top stictch and you've got some fun, crinkly bills.

This is a great toy for her to use to imitate mommy, so it really keeps her attention.  I love to watch as she combs her hair with big smiles. ;)
Happy Sewing!

August 29, 2010

HOW TO: Add Sponsors to Your Blog...


I've been receiving a lot of questions asking me about adding sponsors or advertisers to blogs, so I thought I would take the emails I have sent to people and share it with all of you!
Amanda (and several others!) asked - "I noticed that you had several (advertisers) on your blog sidebar and I was wondering if sponsors just come to you or if you seek them out?"
So here is my answer:
I save two trade spots per month (for advertising on another blog) and give those out on a one month basis. It gives the advertisers a taste and then after a month they can decide if they want to pay or not. It also gets your blog name or shop out there.

Make sure you have information - pricing and stats - on an advertising page. I find more people respond when the info is right there and they don't need to email you for it. I also found doing my buy two months get one free special sparked interest.

And don't be afraid to contact companies and say, hey, I have this blog, it gets traffic and is in your target market, would you be interested. But you really have to prove to them that it will be worth their while. The more exposure you get, the more exposure THEY'll get.

If you have a company approach you for a giveaway you can give them the option of putting their blog in your sponsor section for the week of the giveaway and then give them the option of keeping it there for the rest of the month for a reduced rate.

And of course, people are followers, so if you get a few key companies advertising, then people are going to say - hey, if they are doing it, so should we.

Good luck and Happy Blogging!

August 28, 2010

Stop the Pain Please!


Does your little one get out of her car seat and have red neck like mine?  Sometime between my son using the carseat and my daughter we lost the seat belt covers that came with the seat.  Everytime we would go fora car ride I would take her out and she would have red marks on her neck from wear the seat belt touched her neck.  It did not look comfy AT all and I decided I would make her some new ones.
I had planned to just wing it, but then while perusing The Sweet Life, a craft blog that I have recently found (and shared with you their Checkbook Cover tutorial), I saw that she ALSO had a tutorial for Carseat Seat Belt Covers!  PERFECT.  Someone had already done the work for me, so I might as well follow along, right?
They turned out perfectly and were quick and EASY to make!
Check 'em out:

And now with toddler all snug:

No more red welts or sore necks for your little ones. Head HERE for her awesome tutorial.
Happy Crafting!

August 26, 2010

What are little boys made of? #22

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Copy and paste into your blog.
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I love last weeks most popular post:
Honey We're Home made this adorable wall art using pages from the book "I Love You More". Simple and can be done pretty inexpensively (especially if you buy the frames from Michael's during any of their 40% off frame sales!).  I am now going out to buy this book - my kids and I play the I love you more game on a daily basis!  Thanks for introducing me to this great book Megan! And click HERE to see how Megan actually made this beauties.
Party Guidelines: 1) please link to your blog post (not your blog main page) so people can go directly to your project and 2) Enter your blog name and in paranthesis add the name of your project so we can clearly see what it is 3) Don't forget, these should be BOY RELATED (Big Boy projects are accepted too)! AND PLEASE grab my button!

August 25, 2010

Sugar & Spice Weekly Link Party #21

The winner of the Vinyl Wallet from Stitch n Studio is:
Congrats Sy!

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Copy and paste into your blog.

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Have you're kids started back to school yet?  My daughter entered the fourth grade today.  She was sent in with personalized notecards (free download from yours truly!) and lotion (I can not take credit for this, I took the idea from last weeks link up!  I did have to create my own because the download provided wasn't high quality.).  If you haven't done anything for your child's teacher... then last week's most popular link will appeal to you!
How Does She? (SUPER excited the ladies came over and linked up!  LOVE their blog) linked up this super adorable back to school teacher board.  What teacher doesn't want this?  Head on over HERE for a tutorial so you can be the Star, Mom!

What do you have in store for me this week?!?

The party guidelines are: 1) please link to your blog post (not your blog main page) so people can go directly to your project and 2) Enter your blog name and in paranthesis add the name of your project so we can clearly see what it is 3) Don't forget, these should be GIRL RELATED (can be for us grown up girls too)! AND PLEASE grab my button and add it to your post so that other crafty ladies can come join the fun.

August 24, 2010

Friendly Tuesday :: Life is Not Just Paper and Glue


Hi everyone! Tammy here from Not Just Paper and Glue. I want to thank Kim for inviting me to stop in today and share some of my projects with all of her friends.

Not Just Paper and Glue started out in December 2006 as a place to show off my scrapbook pages and talk about some of the fun things that happen around our little farm. Today you will find everything from scrapbooking to cheesemaking, handmade cards to homemade soap, wild flowers to tame sunsets and cool crafts to fresh hot bread - because life is not just about paper and glue; it's a whole lot more!

My goal is to help people feel free to share their creative talents as I try to encourage them along this path in life.

Thank you so much Kim, for having me be at guest here at seven thirty three!
If you are interested in participating in Friendly Tuesday please email me at 733blog(at)!

August 23, 2010

It's all in the flick of the wrist: A ringlet!

And now on to Ringlets... what's a ringlet, you ask?  A Ring/Bracelet of course!

Oh, the days of my youth.  I have always been a little bit crafty.  Growing up I would paint ceramics and rocks (I made the cutest dinosaur out of this large rock... wish I had a picture), crochet blankets, sew "things".  I even dabbled a little in jewelry (including making horse hair bracelets from the tail of my favorite stallion, Konyok).  One day while playing with some cord I came up with this snazzy hand accessory and wore it for a year.  No joke... my entire sophmore year of high school.  And to be honest, I STILL love it and would wear it if I thought it would match my work attire.

All you need is a length of cord (no more than 1 yard is necessary), satin, leather, whatever you want and if you want to add a little bling, a bead. 
It is super easy, and I know your teens will love this.
You're going to really want to follow the pictures because explaining this via a keyboard will be a little tricky.


First, lay the cord down and put your middle finger over it and then loop it up over your finger and crisscross the cord.

Bring it down to your wrist and go under and back up.

Put both sides of the cord through the bead (bead is optional) and then bring the cord back down under your wrist.  Tie off and your done!

It isn't easy to take off when you first start wearing it and will most likely have to untie it (although you can always add a clasp).  However, if you keep it on for a length of time it will stretch a little and you'll be able to pull it over your finger and then it comes off easily.

August 22, 2010

HOW TO: Add a Favicon to your Blogger Site


Carolina wrote in and asked the following question:
Something I'd really love to learn is how to change the little icon next to my URL. Right now, it is the Blogger B... any idea how to customize this??
So I sat down to write-up the tutorial.  I use IE8 so have tabs and had my Blogger dashboard open and guess what popped into my reader?  Tip Junkie's post of the day, which just happened to be: Blogging 101: Favicons!!!
What's a Favicon?  It is that little icon that Carolina was asking about.  So no need for me to write up this tutorial, just head on over to Tip Junkie and you too can have a cute little Favicon.  I do have one but it is not showing up in IE... so if you have Firefox, look up there, and you'll see it!
I've been receiving a lot of emails from bloggers looking for tips on advertising, and tips for new bloggers in general.  Would it be helpful for me to write up a post with some answers I've been giving out?
Keep your questions coming, I love helping other bloggers beautify there blogs!

August 21, 2010

Keys to Change and a Back to School Freebie!

The Kinley Lane giveaway winner is commentor #36 - Janene!  I usually give you a little picture of the number generator, but I'm on my hubby's netbook and don't have my usual tools, so you just have to trust me on this one!  Congrats Janene, who is a lovely follower of seven thirty three!

And don't forget to head over to Serenity Now for a giveaway from ME!
I can't believe it has taken me so long to make a key fob!  It has been on my to-do list FOR-ever!  So simple and quick!  And let me tell you, it has changed my life!  FOR REAL.  It really has made running errands and such so much easier.  Funny how little, ordinary things can really made a difference.

I'm the type of girl you see loaded down with bags and babies and her keys between her teeth.  I drop them, or leave them places.  But not anymore, thanks to the great tutorial over at The Idea Room.
I received a gift card to Joann's from my good friends Jeremy and Krista (thanks guys!) so I went out and picked up some items I'd been wanting to buy (like a new blade for my rotary cutter), and while I was there I got some cute fabrics, more interfacing, thread, batting, you know - the essentials.
I decided it was time to make a key fob and here is my end result:

I'm loving it!  I ran some errands and just slipped it on my wrist.  It was comfy and it stayed put.

The moral of the story?  Don't put this project off any longer!  Especially if you are a mom or more than one child.  You will see that this thing ROCKS YOUR WORLD.
The next order of business is todays FREEBIE!

I made these cute little notecards for my daughters teacher (school starts Wednesday!) and thought I should share.  There are 4 per sheet.  The name area has been left blank so you can fill it in with a sharpie (or if you would like these personalized, email me and we'll discuss price).  I printed them on cardstock, cut them apart and tied with a cute little ribbon.
Now that you are done with that, don't forget to head over and thank Amy for her super easy key chain tutorial!

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